How can a cross-section from a *.dwg or *.dxf file be imported into SCIA Engineer?

With the module esa.07 – General cross-section it is possible to import a cross-section from a *.dwg or *.dxf file into SCIA Engineer.
Starting from the menu ‘Libraries’ > ‘Cross-sections’ you can add to your project a new cross-section, type ‘General’:

After clicking on [Add] the window ‘Cross-section editor’ opens. You will notice the different options right away: in addition to the import of a dxf/dwg file, it is also possible to enter the desired geometry yourself based on polygons or an existing section from the library. Futhermore the dimensions can even be parameterized.

Choose now for the option ‘Import dxf/dwg’ and open the concerned file. The import of for instance a cross-section for a bridge requires the following steps. Put the ‘Selection mode’ to ‘Polygons’ and select the outline of the section. Next put ‘Selection mode’ to ‘Polygonal openings’ and select the lines which form the borders of the openings. Don’t forget to enter the correct scale, and then choose for ‘Import selected’. After the choice of the material, assign the origin as enter point.

TIP: Take care to define in the source file all of the outlines as polylines, and to define each circle segment as an arc through 3 points (not approximated by lots of straight lines).

After clicking on [Close], the following result is obtained:

Click in this window on [Update] to show the properties of the cross-section, calculated by SCIA Engineer based on standard formulas known from basic mechanics.
To retrieve more correct results for the shear and torsion properties, it’s recommended to select the option ‘FEM analysis’. In that case some calculations are done based respectively on the theories of Grasshof-Zuravski and Prandtl.

TIP: This new cross-section - possibly together with a whole set of cross-sections - can also be saved to a database file (*.db4) via the ‘Save to file’ icon. Afterwards it can be loaded to any SCIA Engineer project, by means of the ‘Read from file’ icon.